Trump says may retaliate; Govt rethinks export ban, says enough stocks at home

Published: April 8, 2020 3:25:24 pm

Coronavirus: Trump’s aggressive advocacy of malaria drug divides medical communityPresident Donald Trump listens throughout a briefing concerning the coronavirus within the James Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House, Monday, April 6, 2020, in Washington. 

SHORTLY after US President Donald Trump stated that “there may be retaliation” if India doesn’t conform to export Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ), a key anti-malarial drug,

India Tuesday stated that it’ll provide important medicine to “some nations who have been particularly badly affected” by COVID-19 and to “neighboring countries who are dependent on India’s capabilities”.

New Delhi additionally stated {that a} “comprehensive assessment” of India’s home necessities has confirmed the “availability of medicines for all possible contingencies”. It stated that the inventory place “could allow” Indian corporations to satisfy the export commitments they’ve already made.

On April 4, after Trump made the request for provides of HCQ in a telephone name to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, New Delhi was “considering the request”.

Incidentally, that very same day, the federal government had banned exports of HCQ, a drug Trump has repeatedly touted as a “game-changer” within the struggle towards COVID-19 however whose effectiveness is being debated.

Besides the US, Brazil, some European international locations, and neighboring international locations too, are asking for HCQ.

HCQ tablets are acknowledged as a prophylactic for these on the frontline of the struggle towards COVID-19 — docs, nurses, paramedics, and first responders — and can be utilized to deal with sufferers contaminated with the virus.

Articulating the shift within the Indian authorities’ place, the newly appointed official spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs, Anurag Srivastava, stated Tuesday: “Our first obligation is to ensure that there are adequate stocks of (COVID-related) medicines for the requirement of our own people. In order to ensure this, some temporary steps were taken to restrict exports of a number of pharmaceutical products.”

“Given the enormity of the COVID-19 pandemic, India has always maintained that the international community must display strong solidarity and cooperation. This approach also guided our evacuation of nationals of other countries.

In view of the humanitarian aspects of the pandemic, it has been decided that India would license paracetamol and HCQ in appropriate quantities to all our neighboring countries who are dependent on our capabilities.

We will also be supplying these essential drugs to some nations who have been particularly badly affected by the pandemic. We would therefore discourage any speculation in this regard or any attempts to politicize the matter,” the MEA spokesperson stated.

Early on Tuesday (India time), Trump had stated “there may be retaliation” if India doesn’t conform to export hydroxychloroquine.

“I would be surprised if he (Prime Minister Narendra Modi) would, you know, because India does very well with the United States,” Trump stated at a White House press briefing when a reporter requested whether or not he was frightened about “retaliation to the ban on the export of medical goods” from India.

“I don’t like that decision, I didn’t hear that that was his decision. I know that he stopped it for other countries. I spoke to him yesterday, we had a very good talk and we’ll see whether or not that’s his… For many years, they’ve been taken advantage of the United States on trade.

So I would be surprised if that were his decision. He’d have to tell me that. I spoke to him Sunday morning, called him, and I said, we’d appreciate you allowing our supply to come out. If he doesn’t allow it to come out. That would be OK. But of course, there may be retaliation. Why wouldn’t there be?” the US President stated.

With greater than 350,000 confirmed instances of coronavirus infection and over 10,000 deaths, the US has emerged as the brand new epicenter of the pandemic.